The parent page
While COVID is currently putting a damper on some activities, Tilikum is anticipating and planning for an exciting Summer Camp season!
Registration for Day Camp, QUEST Adventure Camp, Family Camp, and Family Weekends opens January 15. For more information about how Tilikum is working to keep campers, guests, and staff safe click here. For the most current information about Summer Camps and Summer Camp scheduling, email Rommie Christiansen/Program Director. For current information about your specific Summer Camp registrations, email Debbie Ford/Camp Registrar.
Information for parents of Day Camp, QUEST Camp, and High Adventure Camp campers.
Here is some specific information about how your child can get the most from their experience at Tilikum. If you have additional questions, email Rommie Christiansen/Camp Program Director, or call Rommie at (503) 538-2763 ext. 106.
Drop-off and pick-up
Here are some things to keep in mind before you drop your child off at Camp.
As a Day Camp operating during the pandemic, we are required to operate similarly to child care facilities including daily check-in and check-out procedures. This means that during these times of the day we will be wearing personal protective equipment (masks & safety goggles) and performing basic health screenings including a temperature check with a no-touch forehead thermometer. We require that campers wear a mask during these transition times (drop-off and pick-up) as well as anytime they are unable to socially distance from other campers.
Check-in for the first day of Camp starts at 8:30AM. When you arrive at Tilikum, you will see staff members directing cars through our check-in and daily health screening process. This protocol is required in order for Tilikum to be able to run programs this summer. Please plan for the check-in process to take a little bit longer this year! Thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation. Our summer staff are working very hard to make sure everything runs smoothly and that every camper is safe at camp! Together, we can ensure that our summer camp programs are successful, fun, and safe for everyone. Here is what to expect:
- As you come up the driveway and pass the office, a staff member will connect with you, ask which camper(s) you have with you, and direct you to a check-in/screening station. If for any reason there is unresolved medical or registration information, or if you have medication to give to the health manager for the day, you will be directed to a spot where a full-time staff member will check in with you.
- When you pull up to the screening station, you will be asked to put your vehicle in park and put on the emergency brake. This is an appropriate time for you and your camper(s) to put on your masks.
- You will be asked two health screening questions in regard to your camper(s): (1) Are they exhibiting any of the following symptoms: fever, sore throat, cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste or smell?, and, (2) In the last 14 days, have they had any close contact with a person who has either a presumptive or confirmed case of CoVid-19? Presumptive means that they are being tested but have not yet received results.
- After screening questions have been answered, the staff member will take your camper’s temperature with a no-touch forehead thermometer. If a child has a fever of 100.4 degrees or above, they will not be able to attend camp for the week.
- The screening process is now complete. You will be asked to double-check your transportation list. This is the list of people who have permission to pick up your child after camp. Once you’ve approved the list, your camper can get out of the car and will be directed to walk to their counselor, who will be waiting for them.
- After you have waved goodbye to your camper for the day, please wait patiently for Tilikum Staff to signal you to pull forward and exit.
- And that is Monday Check-in! Every other day of the week will go by a little more quickly, but our health screening process will be a daily requirement. You can help make this a low-stress experience by talking to your child ahead of time about how we are working together as a team to make camp happen this year and to keep others safe. We also recommend that you start practicing your daily health check now by taking your child’s temperature and asking how they feel so they know what to expect.
When should I pick my child up from camp?
Please arrive each day at 3:30PM to pick up your camper(s). Please have your ID on hand, as we need this in order to confirm that you are on your camper’s transportation list. We will check this every day. Similarly to our morning drop-off system, you will be directed to wait at a designated spot while we call a staff member to bring your camper to you. After your camper has entered the vehicle, please wait for a staff member to signal you to pull forward and exit.
Please note we are only able to release children to individuals on the approved list of transportation providers. Changes to your transportation list can be made online, on pages 4/5 of your medical form, until noon on Monday of your camp week. After that please email any changes to Suzanne/Registrar. Remember to inform everyone on your transportation list that ID is required daily at Check-Out.
For more information email Debbie Ford/Camp Registrar.
What does a typical daily schedule for Day Camp/QUEST look like?
8:45AM – Arrival
9:15AM – Opening activity
10:00AM – Activity
11:15AM – LUNCH (Tilikum has special locations all over the grounds for each camper group to eat lunch.)
12:05PM – Waterfront Time (Kids have a choice if they want to swim, canoe, visit barn animals, or rest.)
1:00PM – Get dressed
1:15PM – Trail Talk (quiet reflective time)
1:55PM – Activity
3:15PM – Closing activity
3:40PM – Camper pick-up
Summer Camp During COVID: What has changed?
In light of COVID we have needed to make several adjustments to our programs. Here is what you can expect:
1. Stable Groups: We have reduced our summer camp capacity in accordance with state guidelines for childcare and day camps requiring that children stay in stable groups of no more than 10, with two counselors. “Stable” means that these groups do not mix at all throughout the week.
2. Social Distancing: We are sure you are wondering how we will accomplish this with young children. We have several creative ways to travel around camp and play together while maintaining a safe distance. We also know this will not go perfectly as planned, but we will do our best! The key will be emphasizing teamwork to all the kiddos who are joining us this summer as we work to keep each other safe and have fun together.
3. Hand Washing and Sanitizing: There will be hand washing stations placed all over camp, and staff will have sanitizer packs with them at all times for use outside of meal and bathroom times. All program areas will be sanitized before and after each use.
4. Updated Activities: You have likely read about some of our adjustments this summer. We have eliminated all activities that break social distancing protocol and replaced them with other activities. The program that has been most affected by these changes is Quest. Our team has worked hard to find innovative solutions that enable us to keep some of our challenge course and high ropes activities intact. However, some of those activities will still remain closed this year. To supplement the Adventure Camp program we have added a Survival School curriculum which includes knot tying, building a shelter, a map-and-compass scavenger challenge, fire building, extreme canoe relay, and “slingshot alley.”
Who is taking care of my child?
- College age or older adults who have been selected for their desire and abilities to work with children, their friendly personalities and their commitment to the Lord.
- Tilikum’s summer staff are taught to recognize teachable moments as a priority and use them to challenge and encourage youth and point them towards a relationship with God.
- Tilikum’s Summer Staff have current certification in First Aid/CPR and Emergency Water Safety. Lifeguards are certified by the American Red Cross.
What are behavioral expectations at Camp Tilikum?
Tilikum provides a safe, Christ-centered environment. Though these situations are rare Tilikum reserves the right to call the camper’s parent and ask for the camper to be taken home if it is deemed that his or her behavior or actions pose a threat to a camper’s safety or the Camp. Staff will inform campers of behavior expectations at the beginning of Camp. A camper will immediately be sent home under the following circumstances:
- Bullying of any kind
- Any act of physical violence against another person
- Deliberately running away from their group (this does not include wandering away by accident)
Waterfront considerations and safety
- Each swim time has four American Red Cross certified lifeguards and four other staff supervising swimming campers.
- Campers who wish to canoe are supervised by a staff person trained in Small Craft Safety. Campers in 1st and 2nd grade must have an adult with them in the canoe.
- There are three sections of our waterfront: Shallow, Middle & Deep. Campers who wish to swim in the Middle & Deep must pass a swim test conducted by our lifeguards.
- Campers swim with a buddy and the lifeguards do “Buddy Checks” every 10 minutes as well as continued monitoring of the swimming area.
- Waterfront restrooms are supervised by staff and counselors.
What safety precautions are taken at Camp Tilikum?
Accreditation and safety are our priority.
- Tilikum is accredited by the American Camping Association and has earned this mark of distinction since 1977.
- All Summer Staff have current certification in First Aid/CPR and emergency water safety. They have undergone two weeks training on all the different activities at Tilikum.
- The waterfront is supervised by lifeguards certified by the American Red Cross.
- All staff, both paid and volunteer have passed a criminal background check.
- All Challenge Course activities are designed and presented with great consideration for your child’s physical, psychological, and emotional safety (QUEST & High Adventure Camps only).
- Challenge Course staff are trained to the standards of the ACCT (Association for Challenge Course Technology) by Scott Diefenbaugh, Challenge Course Manger, with more than 16 years’ Challenge Course experience and more than 10 years’ training experience.
- Participants on the high elements are required to wear harnesses and helmets and are connected to a rope belay system (QUEST & High Adventure Camps only).